Saudi Arabia offers trade finance to boost economy
Finance Minister Ibrahim Al Assaf said Saudi Arabia plans to offer trade finance of up to 85 percent in order to boost non-oil exports to help diversify its economy. Under newly approved rules, the state-funded facilities would be offered to companies with a high percentage of Saudi personnel and for Saudi exports comprising a minimum of 25 percent value added locally.
Saudi Arabia's non-oil exports, including petrochemicals, rose to $1.6 billion in the second quarter of 2000, up 10 percent year on year. The kingdom has been trying to diversify its economy away from oil and encourage foreign investment and a bigger role for the private sector.
In parallel, the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority (SAGIA) announced it has granted 14 licenses for new industrial projects worth a total of $24 million in investments. Five of the projects are 100 percent foreign owned and nine others as joint ventures with Saudi investors. Since the SAGIA was set up in April, it has issued 53 investment licenses worth $1billion, and licenses for the investment of $160 million in existing projects. — ( Lebanon Invest )
© 2000 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)